Last year was a relative success for the Libyan upstream. Crude output came in at a seven-year high 1.11mn b/d, forced shut-ins were minimal and NOC was even dusting off development projects (MEES 3 January). But just 17 days into the new year a major oil blockade by frustrated eastern-based warlord General Khalifa Haftar knocked more than million barrels offline (see chart 1, and MEES, 24 January).

Austria’s OMV chose to remain optimistic. As part of its 500,000 boe/d overall net output guidance in 2020, it penciled in that 35,000 b/d (some 7%, all oil) would come from Libya even though this would represent its highest net output since at least 2009 (see chart 2 and table). And by the time it announced these targets on 6 February its output had already trickled down to zero. (CONTINUED - 1877 WORDS)